Springboard Hospitality is an independent hotel management company based in Encino, California. Its portfolio currently comprises of 41 hotels, primarily in the West Coast and Hawaii.
Trialing ROOMDEX in the fall of 2020, Springboard was one of the early adopters of automated upselling. Fast forward to Q1 2023 and 17 properties will be using the upsell solution. We very recently caught up with Brandon Standerfer, Corporate Director of Distribution to ask, "Why ROOMDEX?" Why did a corporate structure take a chance on a new product emerging on the market for their portfolio - and more importantly how it has been performing.
How did you first find out about ROOMDEX? What were your first impressions and your thoughts about it in terms of the possibilities for your portfolio?
It originally started back in 2020. At the time, Springboard's overall technology stack was somewhat fragmented. When I joined, prior to the pandemic, we started thinking about how we could develop a bespoke technology program that would be really forward thinking. We wanted to see how we could use tech to curate the guest journey and that's where a lot of these open API and different platforms started coming to mind. We were early adopters of Opera Cloud, and that is when, coincidentally, Jos was starting ROOMDEX. Jos approached me - we have a long history with working together back when he was with MICROS. He's said,
We're looking for an Opera Cloud partner. Would you be willing to be an early adopter with us and allow for us to plug in APIs through the OHIP platform? The concept fit with our new tech goals, so we said,
Yes. We activated the platform with one of our hotels in West Hollywood, the Chamberlain, followed by The Wilde Resort & Spa in Sedona, Arizona.
What was the thinking behind a developing tech strategy that focused on guest experience?
It is about differentiation. As a management company, we looked at it as building a curated journey based on a per room, per key cost. So, instead of saying to our current owners and potential new owners,
What is your cost of operations? or,
Your technology is "x" thousand dollars. We can say,
We can offer you all this technology at this per key, per month cost - and it will deliver specific ROI.
Because that's a big component, right? Where owners of the hotels are like,
Yeah, I don't want to go with that PMS platform because it's more expensive than the other. We're saying to them,
All in, per key per month you get X, Y, and Z and this is how we'll generate an ROI for you. Instead of looking at individual costs, it's about looking at the PMS combined with other tools, the entire tech stack, that delivers a revenue ROI.
How was the process of integrating ROOMDEX and Opera Cloud through OHIP?
The integration from an OHIP perspective was very seamless, which enabled me, from a corporate level to actually go in through the ROOMDEX console and do all the pre-configuration quickly and easily. So, when we brought in the operations and revenue team, it was pretty much set and forget it. It was more about training them on the pricing decisions for the room upgrades and how that works and then building the confidence that the system doesn't oversell early arrivals or late departures. We find with hotel operations, and even sometimes in the revenue management field, there tends to be a bit of resistance because they can't see the system run its algorithms. You have to build that trust - and ROOMDEX did a very good job with making sure that, as we ramped up through our pilots, to have those bi-weekly meetings to seek feedback and build that confidence with the teams on the ground.
Was Chamberlain the first hotel or did you add other hotels at the same time?
It was the very first. We have currently eight hotels, soon to be nine, on ROOMDEX. We have a plan to roll out probably seven more. In Q1 2023, we should have 17 on the platform.
You are in process of standardizing on Opera cloud. Will you be standardizing on ROOMDEX as you get those PMSs on the cloud?
You've got it. Once we've plugged in Opera Cloud, part of that technology stack is ROOMDEX. As the owners have invested in our new technology stack model, they get all the tools.
How is ROOMDEX performing across the portfolio so far?
Our first two, Chamberlain West Hollywood and the Wilde Resort & Spa Arizona are knocking it out of the park in terms of upselling performance. We plugged a hotel in Hawaii, our Waikiki at Sand Villa, but we didn't realize the impact that the hotel renovation that they are currently going through would have. Because so many rooms are out of order, room upgrades can't perform as well as we would like. But, it's still producing because it's doing early arrivals and late departures. The rooms are due to come back in December and part of the re-branding re-opening strategy is how can they leverage ROOMDEX through room upgrades or late departures, and also delivering on guest services.
We are confident because we have another hotel in Hawaii, the Waikiki Sand Villa, that is probably three blocks away from this hotel and they are performing really well. We activated guest services and the guest have really taken a liking to the guest services that we are offering. We sell beach towels, water bottles, snack packs - something you can grab and go to the beach. We activated that about two months ago and the ROI is up to 10/1. Because ROOMDEX has such a deep integration into Opera, it really has enabled our teams to deliver upon the operational requirements such as guest services.
What would you say to other colleagues who are considering an upsell solution, or someone who had a more traditional view of what upselling is all about?
I mean, it's a conversation that's always being had, right? What I've always said about ROOMDEX to any of colleagues is that with the OHIP integration, ROOMDEX is able to develop a pricing engine by using all the various data points such as check-in times, pick-up pace and what guests are booking. The machine is learning those trends and they are delivering upon it better than a human can. You just have to trust in them.
Everyone in Springboard has bought in to it. This platform is so easy, it's a no brainer. My CEO even said last week when we were in LA,
How much longer until we get the other hotels live?
About ROOMDEX, INC
ROOMDEX is the technology leader in the hotel upselling software space. Its hotel upsell software automates, monetizes and ultimately simplifies the hotel room upgrade process by putting the power of choice in the hotel guest's hands.
ROOMDEX Upsell Automation uses hotel reservation, guest data and its proprietary True AvailabilityTM and Dynamic Pricing algorithms to deliver personalized digital offers, greatly enhancing the guest experience. The hotel upsell tool relieves hoteliers of the labor time required by other upselling solutions while delivering high margin revenue and a substantial ROI.
ROOMDEX is now the exclusive provider of ABS Upselling. Attribute-based selling re-imagines hotel inventory merchandising, delivering a unique and improved guest satisfaction and increased hotel revenue.
ROOMDEX leverages hotel operational and software experience gained by our team members while in leadership roles at companies such as MICROS (now Oracle Hospitality), Nor1, Duetto, StayNTouch and Shiji to develop our innovations in hotel automation, dynamic pricing, operational availability and attribute-based selling. Since founding in spring of 2020, ROOMDEX has signed hundreds of hotels across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific.